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tv   [untitled]    December 22, 2011 2:01pm-2:31pm EST

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eleven pm in moscow i'm match president good to have you with us here on r t our top story it's time for a change in russia this from president dmitry medvedev outlining a plan for widespread democratic reform with the country's political system first in line. over was listening to the annual state of the union address. first and foremost measurement that it promised that people's voices will become louder thanks to sweeping reforms of the country's political system or political stablish meant was listening carefully to his address to the parliament as he sketched out the first steps which need to be taken he plans to bring those initiatives to the newly elected duma in the very near future in the last months of his presidency should get pregnant. my proposals are to introduce direct elections for russia's regional heads to simplify the registration of political parties to remove the need
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to gather signatures to take part in federal and regional parliamentary elections to cut the number of signatures needed to take part in the presidential election i also suggest changing the system for the parliamentary election i suggest introducing proportional representation in two hundred twenty five constituencies this will allow each territory to have the director representative in the parliament. well this wasn't as comfortable as usual for the nation is that it to deliver these annual address mostly because you had to respond to the most recent events in the country protests and allegations which followed the december for parliamentary elections and claims that the elections had been have been raked but early admission that if at ordered a thorough investigation as a result of that criminal cases had been filed for alleged violations during the elections the results of twenty one polling stations cancelled but the president stressed today that elections in any country are part of domestic affairs of that
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country and the russian leadership would not allow any foreign interference but our . people's right to express their opinion by all means is guaranteed attempts to manipulate the people of russia deceive them to instigate social discord are acceptable but we won't allow it. to prove a case is to draw society into the shady enterprises we won't allow interference from outside in our internal affairs russia needs democracy not chaos. all this address looked more like a long to do. should he become the country's next prime minister rather than a farewell address from him as the president he again emphasized the role of the enlarged open government as an instrument to get feedback from the people this government consists of precious prominent figures from different areas of society it wasn't and he described it today as an social elevator for the most creative and
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ones and he also quoted eisenhower when he was talking about a model of democracy to vote for russia it's not let the government do it for us he said but let us do it ourselves the key focus of investors address was economic reform more on that coming up in our business report in a few minutes. this point acknowledging the fact russia's economy needs more integration competition and contribution from small business. said that russia's economy is in good health and back to pre-crisis levels more of this business reported. but first a team of the arab league peace monitors has arrived in syria as part of an ambitious plan to bring peace to the conflict torn nation the arrival comes as the violence is reaching a peak with hundreds reportedly killed in recent days the latest round of violence drawing strong international reaction turkey accusing the assad regime of turning the country into a bloodbath the u.s.
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also renewed calls for him to step down into one of the military off the streets or face more international measures syria is already suffering under a slew of economic and regional sanctions but as often happens is the ordinary people feeling the pinch as reports from damascus. it's been any ten months since there is uprising began the capital of damascus has remained largely sheltered from the conflict. in the bustling sun so it seems like it's business as usual but as one says sets in the winds of change have begun to blow a little stronger the arab league's impose tough economic sanctions the effects of which have been felt even head in a poor area in the suburbs of damascus and her family struggling to make ends meet . has learning difficulties the beans for a living that he barely makes a hundred and fifty syrian pounds a day three dollars to support him and he's white. now the fuel for his vending
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cart has become harder to get hold of with the economic sanctions i'm driving by myself. there are less products available and the prices are pushed higher and there's been fights over gas we've been trying to manage by cutting back as much as we can but sometimes when we can't afford it which is don't eat the economic situation in syria was one of the areas president had been faints be making very well. for a population that it started seeing the results of economic opportunity. financial transactions. blackouts become the new. they could be even the financial times ahead. because of the economic sanctions people rushed to stockpile fuel and gas just in case people are a little bit afraid of the fact that water or gas might run out and this is why you see these queues this in place by the arab league it was hit the sanctions with the
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government's hands when it came to ending the violence in the country because inside syria at the moment many feel is every day people who are being punished economic sanctions still just taking the lead that he saw on his head that must have become part of the daily life of many people here in syria. from the arab league will be paving the way for an observer mission to at the end of the month much opposition they remain skeptical about whether that to bring about any change . in the west of the conflict areas change can come a moment to seeing some parents of two three families like. finding life under the sanctions increasingly desperate search. damascus. commenting on the situation in syria new york based all foreign political analyst eva golinger thinks the true situation in the country is not being told by the
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mainstream media most of the international media with the exception of a few stations have ignored the fact that the. government is fighting armed groups internally and it's country groups that have been armed again by outside forces and they've instead tried to portray it as civilians peaceful civilians protesting for change in their country who are being massacred by the government this is an incredibly dangerous manipulation of fact that's occurring and and that we've seen in other countries like the case of libya that's been used to justify outside aggression military action and war and and political assassination of a head of state again this is an attempt to try to alter the perception of what's taking place in the country and also to get the support from other countries on board for those countries and their governments to be out to justify their actions to overthrow a government to implement another that would be subordinate to a foreign agenda coming up a little later we were turned away the very first sparks of unarrest ignited in
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north africa and the middle east giving rise to the arab spring. i was very very frightened and of those moments like that when you realize that the mood in a place like telling a scale from one second to another can change to most of our middle east correspondent discusses what it was like at the heart of events that shook the entire region this year the latest analogies special series testimony twenty all of it coming your way in a few moments. with this is. just history in the making. testimony. ten stories that shapes two thousand and eleven on our t.v. . a wave of synchronized bombings tore through the iraqi capital killing at least sixty nine people wounding nearly two hundred ambulances could be heard racing back and forth as massive plumes of smoke rose above the baghdad sky authorities say at least fourteen devices one all throughout the city ranging from car bombs to hidden
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explosives another blast happened outside of a cafe in the capital later in the day it's also been less than a week since u.s. forces pulled out of the country leaving behind an air of uncertainty and surging religious tension that is director of the institute for policy studies believes these are consequences of a disastrous occupation there has been under way in iraq a rising level of sectarian tension much of it being stoked i think by the u.s. backed government of prime minister maliki and with the withdrawal of the last batch of u.s. troops despite the remaining thousands of u.s. paid contractors it was a moment when it looks like there's a lot of evidence that maliki may be trying to consolidate his version of she had domination over the sunni community and that's very much rooted in the role of the united states in the original invasion and occupation of iraq the us brought into
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being a level of sectarian discord and ultimately sectarian fighting that had not been the case in iraq prior to the u.s. invasion the fact that u.s. troops are being withdrawn now doesn't mean that the consequences of those years of occupation simply disappear those consequences are remaining and in fact getting worse the european union has restricted sales of drugs used in the u.s. to execute convicts more than forty death row inmates have been killed by lethal injection in america this year alone supporters of the move to disrupt supplies hope it will cut that number but it's better reports restrictions could actually make the situation worse. they've tried hanging electrocution and most recently a drug used to euthanize animals but now american jails will find it much harder to kill prisoners on death row the main supply line for its lethal injections has been
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cut off after the e.u. slaps new restrictions on drug exports i really think this will make a difference and we will see the effects of this this control order in the coming months that the the u.s. relies on european drugs for use in executions and without them they're going to be stuck and lives will be saved specific execution drugs aren't made in the e.u. but several american states have been importing sedatives instead drugs designed to help being used to hurt. exports of drugs like sodium thiopental will now be controlled to stop their use in a three part lethal cocktail the interstate it was being used to put the condemned inmate to sleep as another drug paralyzed before the final heart stopper was administered without that initial numbing stage lethal injections are unconstitutional under u.s. law the usual supply for these drugs has been dwindling since the only u.s.
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manufacturer ceased production last year american prisons though found an alternative source right here in west london at this fairly unassuming driving school buildings also shared by dream farmer a british firm exporting british drugs the u.s. prisons to kill people the u.k. government soon found out and banned its use so american prisons searched elsewhere r.t. reported in may how some states have begun using pen to barbara told a drug normally used to put pets to sleep that's never been tested for human executions its primary use for humans is to treat epilepsy but it has no pain killing properties many feel its use on death throes tantamount to torture this can cause excruciating pain if something goes wrong and because we have no tests we can't guarantee that nothing will get around to people at risk of not being killed being tortured to death following our report danish manufacturer impose their own restrictions to prevent misuse the new e.u.
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embargo covers eight barbiturates in total including painted by. us stockpiles will eventually run dry but many fear it's only a matter of time before prisons try again with something else unfortunately the death merchants in the us can sometimes be creative in terms of what they put to use in order to put people to death and so i think what we need is a clause which said if other drugs should appear on the market and we discover that the u.s. is. those we can quickly have a quick procedure to add those to the list without you know wait another year aside from lethal injection other methods like hanging and firing squad a still sanctioned in the us but in now rarely used these new restrictions may not choke off the drug supply completely but it will certainly tighten the noose on america's controversial death penalty. might have been it out see london turkey is recalling its ambassador from france in response to the assertion of paris
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lawmakers to pass a bill that outlaws genocide denial including the mass killing of armenians by ottoman turks in one nine hundred fifteen hundreds of french turks have been protesting in front of the national assembly in paris saying the atrocities of the past tribunal after historians if approved by the senate the punishment for offenders could result in a year in prison and a fine of forty five thousand euros appear in your lane a professor of political science at paris west university thinks the move is just a way of scoring political points. first of all you have to realize that it's a build through the lower house that are meant and then it has to go to the senate most probably it will not go to the senate before the presidential election and maybe. it will do so little political game is played by various political parties. there is historical debate genocide has not been down there was a genocide and there's also the political games being played by various parties to
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get the armenian vote in the french elections every nation has to investigate its crimes in the past but establish an historical truth is the work of the story and it is not something that should be done and established by law. time to continue to continue now our look back into the past twelve months with artie's ten reports on the events that shaped the year today we look at egypt a country where a million man uprising became a springboard for a tide of riots and protests artie's paullus leader shares but she went through reporting from the heart of the arab spring. i think my biggest impression from covering the egyptian story this is the sense of betrayal and anger that people in egypt still have there are hundreds of thousands of people who are still not right now in times square as you can see many of them
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heeding white. occupation it was dangerous covering egypt stories of journalists and i think it was even more dangerous to cover not as a foreign journalist i remember when we were there back from say if you read we kept a very low profile we tried not to go too much into the crowd in tahrir square we took all kinds of signage that we had on us that said we were journalists i mean of course ican tied the camera there by and large you don't want to do the attention to them is necessary the officers from which we were forecasting we took off all the signs that said that we were media because this was also was inciting anger and frustration among the people. people often asked me if being a woman is an advantage or disadvantage to going to dangerous areas as a journalist most of the time that is an advantage because we find that people have to shake things mode with you i'm talking to men and women because you're a woman and you laced with me perhaps in
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a male colleague but i do feel frightened being a woman in tough explain to people here. they believe in a place one dictator hosni mubarak one not one i can tell me that anything i look for toughness square i walked with a male colleague whether it was an egyptian cameramen where russian cameramen and much safer putting my arm through his that people would still walk past me brush squeeze a part of my body and look at me with this kind of leering that leaves you feel very frightened and very vulnerable as a woman. back in february when the police were taken off the streets there was a real. since i was completely honest most in cairo and i remember doing a lot of reports of my talks. i am not now not. married and i am certain that night i had to move back to the hotel because there was a curfew and there were no cars on the street and it was almost so we'll walking past apartment buildings and see people coming in front of the apartment buildings that
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have formed a kind of nightwatch group and you had people in their eighty's and their ninety's standing there with literally a kitchen knife or a kitchen broom and wish that they were going to protect their apartments following these gangs that were patrolling the streets of cairo they were trying to steal what they could because as i say there were no police around this is your friend. there is one minister particularly i was very frightened we were standing on the outskirts of tackle square i was talking to a group of people and as always had to speak to one person and then everybody comes to see what's happening and and people who live in the ratings are really angry so it's not that they are listening to what's being said often they just want to get a voice is exposed on the camera and in the moment and that's and that's the scary part is that these things happen in a moment in a moment the entire move changed when people started yelling and shouting not that they just wanted their voices to be heard but that the actually wanted to protest
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as journalists and the camera man that i was working with understood immediately both was happening he started screaming for me to get into the cockpit i remember the drive that because we had a driver that had been allocated to us came screeching down the road i mean i'm looking pushed the crowd and the journalist was pushing me into the comedy getting into the car he kind of flying himself in off to me in the car was banging on the car as we squared away. and i don't even know if the word revolution is there why would but i don't think the revolution in egypt is over we've. just to say this is of perhaps the same with additional to the nations but again the anger the frustration the disappointment the scenes of hopes of not being realized is poll people on the streets of cairo if you win there is a sense that this country is nowhere near where people had hoped and dreamed it would be back in february and i think this is the general uncertainty that is
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sweeping the middle east there is a sense that things are changing but another sense of no one not knowing exactly when and how and what ultimately these changes will bring. the r.t. crews got eight more reports you can see each day leading up to the new year more memories of twenty eleven for you experience here on r t so stay with us. and back to one of our top stories this hour with the conflict in syria showing no sign of letting up i'm now joined by sybil edmonds a former f.b.i. translator and founder of the national security whistleblowers coalition to talk about just where the country may be headed thanks very much for joining us so there's been a lot of disagreement over the accuracy of the statements and the figures coming out of syria now so the arab league observers are finally in the country do you think we'll see some clarity about the situation finally come to light. well i believe that's unlikely because if you really look at the situation and the
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so-called arab league you just see the comical aspect of this because i mean you have look at the member countries you're looking get rain and on daily basis we have news from rain and their human rights abuses and their own dictatorship you have saudi arabia and also you are having. a team of countries nations that are on the payroll of the united states and of course they are going to produce what ever they are told to produce so the expect that who do you think has the a good independent third party to oversee this all and make observations. well in the past i would have said just by having the journalists media real media out there we would get some more accurate feedback and information from the ground but right now i mean what we see hear about these atrocities five houses and
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deaths here and the so-called massacres none of these numbers are confirmed they are actually given and if you look at the media they are actually telling you that they're getting their information from the. rebel army they're not getting it from inside the country but of course when you look at the mainstream media at least here in the united states and the so-called larger chua's i alternatives they are just repeating those numbers now in our four hour news websites we have been getting information from syria and these are not necessarily the supporters of a sudden these are the people who are providing information to us they are there they are on the ground and then be run these stories nobody picks them up except a handful of international news outlets because it does not conform to what the reporting here in the united states so this is basically a make up of
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a psychological warfare first of all the decision on syria was made months or years ago even as the preparations began and this is. the border there there are nato air base there injured airbase in last may and this is may two thousand and eleven so they have the decision they have had that the station they have been preparing for an actual war and then they begin the propaganda and the psychological warfare by trying to get the public support for an unwarranted war because based on those the standers we should be going after every single member of the arab league and that's the papa see. the u.s. foreign policy you're looking at the lies are laying right in front of you however we do have it is a fact that assad is cracking down on the protesters in the country people are dying among the opposition so what do you think could be done to actually bring the
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song to a resolution and stop the bloodshed on both sides i think the opposite of what we have been doing because by imposing sanctions by actually creating restlessness in the country and this is what we have been doing from our base in turkey by from dropping leaflets to actually having the factors working there with the united states with the nato trying to prove oh violence in the guise of you are just doing the opposite what we are doing is not the situation and to actually encourage assad to act differently and i am not. by sure assad but neither a minder fan of rain or saudi arabia or you know even with egypt i mean egypt what was it that we were absolutely supporting mubarak's regime and then he turned the changed our stance these thought in putting our trust that these are the u.s.
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government runs to actually still for the right things on the right thing do wreck the right thing and what have what do we have to just take a look at the situation i'm seeing are you finding the military i'm sorry to jump in but we're going to lose our satellite soon so we have to wrap up so well admins are former f.b.i. translator and founder of the national security whistleblowers coalition thanks for . being back with a recap of our top stories in a few minutes first business next. hello to you in a warm welcome to business r.t. economic achievements are high on president head of said gender and in the spotlight of his address to the federal assembly on thursday with his term as president coming to an end he pointed out that the russian economy has managed to grow faster than its peers despite the global slowdown. in the russia has successfully overcome the most difficult period of global economic instability and
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has returned to pre-crisis growth levels our economy is growing by around four percent which is finance to the most developed countries we keep government debt at a very low level and meet all our liabilities russia has become the world's sixth largest economy. now the rest of president advent of speech centered around top economic priorities for the coming years these include integration boosting competition and encreasing the role of small business economists jacob nell from morgan stanley russia believes middle of speech echoes recent statements from prime minister vladimir putin. what i see is a combined effort by both of them to articulate a economic and political reform program you i think that if we think back to earlier in the year when you had a debate between medvedev who was talking about a program of reform and modernization and putin who is putting more stress on stability i think that we can all see what the choice of the leadership is and that
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is to go for a program of modernization short the impact of these reforms may be somewhat negative because we may see acceleration capital outflows in companies who may have an increase in uncertainty but in the medium term if these reforms are implemented i think that they. should improve russia's growth prospects and make the realization of the top line objectives of the reform program which are twenty five percent of g.d.p. in investment and six to seven percent growth rate that much more realizable. a quick look at the stock markets in russia now and as jobless claims came in on a decline in the us and oil prices remain high russia's markets posted gains on thursday the r.t.s. putting on one percent almost in my stocks up by just enough percent of the main movers on the markets energy shares were up gas prom point six percent d.t.b. continued his decline down point six percent for the bank and after of ours was up
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most of the day but ended on a negative note despite releasing its new model larger ground. the podium of global oil majors is witness a reshuffle as russia's role became the biggest oil producer among public companies during the first nine months of the year it has produced one point six million tons more oil than its previous leader exxon mobil on the say the output of the u.s. firm was hit by revolutions were said to an eighteen percent loss of its world production region meanwhile rose nafta raised its output by two hundred twenty eleven and hopes to increase it by another one point two percent next year it's also planning to be some bessemer by thirty five percent in order to upgrade its refining. and so from business desk for now coming up next i'll see the headlines.
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all in their new pm in moscow these iraqi headline russia needs democracy but not chaos president medvedev our winds the primary challenges facing the country saying russia is on the brink of a new political era where every boy will be heard. arab league observers arrive in syria as the conflict there reaches a bloody peak in international sanctions cause living conditions to deteriorate. and tightening the noose on america's controversial death penalty the plugs the flow of drugs used to kill us.


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